New Delhi: A British Airways plane to London
from here was delayed by about 13 hours after it had to make
an unscheduled stop at Baku airport in Azerbaijan due to an
onboard medical emergency.
The flight, BA-142, left New Delhi for London at 3.30 AM
yesterday and was scheduled to reach London`s Heathrow airport
at 7 AM local time (1230 IST).
But the flight had to make an unscheduled stop at Baku
airport in Azerbaijan after a woman passenger reported sick,
an official said today.
The flight was further delayed when authorities at Baku
did not permit the flight to leave without the sick passenger,
who did not had a valid visa, while the pilot was reluctant to
take off with a sick passenger on board.
Finally, the flight left Baku airport after over six
hours of stay in the Azerbaijan capital.
Then the flight was diverted to Istanbul for change of
crew, where harassed passengers were given food or water at
Istanbul airport. The crew change was necessitated due to the
Flight Duty Time Limitation which bars crew to operate an
aircraft after they have completed a particular number of
hours in flight.
After a brief halt at Istanbul, the flight finally left
for London`s Heathrow to land after a delay of about 13 hours.
While its arrival at Heathrow was scheduled at 7 AM local
time, it arrived at 7.40 PM.
A British Airways spokesperson has apologised to its
customers for the delay to their flight.
"The flight made its onward journey again as soon as it
was practicably possible and we are extremely sorry for the
inconvenience that our customers faced. We hope that they
appreciate that customer safety will always be our highest
priority," the spokesperson said in a statement.